Sherlock Holmes sat in a cab on Baker Street. It was a dark and rainy night, and it did nothing to help settle the nerves that had risen. There was only one person alive who could give Sherlock Holmes nerves. And that person was right now milling around their flat, possibly trying to scrounge up something to eat after a long day at the office. He knew John Watson was home, Mycroft had texted him as such, with his infinite knowledge of all the goings on, and Sherlock had quickly left the morgue where he’d been whiling away the day. Sherlock looked up at the windows to 221B, and could see the sitting room illuminated slightly by lamplight. He wondered if John had kept anything the same, or if he’d changed things up some. He probably at least cleaned up, he had always been after Sherlock about the abhorrent mess he left there.
The cabbie cleared his throat, and Sherlock snapped back to the present. He quickly gave the cabbie some money and crossed the street, stopping in front of their-well, right now it was just his-door. Sherlock paused in front of the door. After three years away, it almost felt like he should ring the bell, or something. Announce his presence. But he pushed past the thought just as he pushed open the door.
As he slowly made his way up the steps, he wondered what John would do, what he would say. There were just too many unanswered questions to be pondered in the short amount of steps, and there he was, without time to mentally prepare himself, at the top of the steps, across the landing and into the flat without preamble.
John turned around and dropped the plate he was holding. It shattered onto the floor, but it went unnoticed by either person. Sherlock just stood in the entryway and stared. He didn’t know what to say, so he said nothing. He would let John make the first move. But until John said something or gave away any clues to how he would react to seeing his dead friend in the flesh, Sherlock just waited.
Sherlock took John’s shocked silence as a perfect time to look at him, really look at him. Sherlock would never had forgotten John, not even for an instant. The last three years had taken its toll. The bags under his eyes were more pronounced, and his hair was much grayer. But he was still John, his John. John who had wished he wasn’t dead. John who had waited patiently for him all these years. Sherlock knew John hadn’t moved on from him, at least Mycroft was good for something, keeping Sherlock updated with his once a month texts on John’s mental state/job status/general well being. And at least Mycroft could be discreet when it counted, and didn’t question Sherlock’s questions about his former flatmate. Knowing about John gave Sherlock a grounding, a reason to keep on his fight with all of Moriarty’s contacts, to make sure everyone he cared for was safe. Because Sherlock Holmes might not have much in the world, but John Watson was one of those constants.
A movement caught Sherlock’s eye, and he realized John was moving towards him. Clearing his head, he saw John take hesitant steps toward his friend. When he was close enough,John reached out to Sherlock, and put his hand out on his coat, fingering the red buttonhole on the left lapel. Sherlock half smiled down at John, as knew the shock was finally starting to wear off, and the tactile feel of the coat was part of what John needed to accept that yes, Sherlock was alive and standing in their flat.
The next thing Sherlock knew, he had been grabbed by said coat lapels with two very strong hands and slammed up against the wall.
“WHAT THE HELL?” John was screaming as he held the stunned detective to the wall. “What the hell was all this about? Huh?” John’s grip tightened on Sherlock as his mind spun, trying to think of something to say. He’d imagined that John would be mad, but livid, well, he hadn’t quite thought that part out yet. Normally the great and unflappable Sherlock Holmes would have already thought of every possible scenario and reaction to a situation, but with John, it was different. Somehow, for some reason, where John was concerned, those pesky things called emotions came into play. And when emotions really hit Sherlock Holmes, it was usually a mess for Sherlock’s mind. Things didn’t come out right or not at all, and the articulate detective was reduced to that of the common man, full of illogical actions and irrational thinking. And it was those things that made what Sherlock do next completely unexpected.
As John drew in another breath to start another diatribe, Sherlock grabbed his own handfuls of John’s jumper and drew him up to him forcefully, closing the short distance between them with a rough kiss. Not exactly how Sherlock intended to silence his flatmate, but it worked.
John pulled back from the kiss, lips flushed and eyes wide, and stared at Sherlock. The silence was suffocating as both men just looked at each other for what seems like hours, but really was only about a minute. Sherlock’s heart and mind raced as he tried to make his next move, but as usual with John, the heart was messing up and mostly overriding the mind.
Sherlock didn’t have much time to dwell on the the ramifications of his impulsive decision to kiss John, as John made a snap decision of his own. Before Sherlock could speak, John moved up and responded with a kiss of his own, also rough with some pent up anger behind it, but before he released Sherlock from the embrace his hands had gone from gripping the coat lapels again to caressing them back down into their original position, and the kiss was more tender. John had settled his hands between them, his fists clenched from trying to process multiple emotions as Sherlock wrapped his arms around John.
As he held John tightly, his flatmate dropped his gaze and began to shake. Sherlock’s adrenaline started to ebb, and he slid down the wall onto the floor, bringing John with him. Sherlock held his crying friend and stroked his hair as the tears fell on his purple dress shirt. Sherlock leaned his head back against the wall, trying to center himself, then gave up and brought his head down to let his own tears fall on John.
Finally John took a deep shaky breath and spoke. “Don’t think you can just come barging in here and come back and change everything but think it’ll be exactly like before. Cause it won’t.” John sighed. “I-I just..” he trailed off, unable yet to express himself. “It’s good to have you back. Because I have missed you.”
Sherlock found himself unable to speak, caught up with a lump in his throat of emotions again. He just nodded and pulled John tighter, and John nodded as well as he acknowledged what Sherlock could not say. John laid his head on Sherlock’s chest, and they sat there entwined together for all the time they needed. There was no rush, not now. Just the two of them together, as it had always been, and now, as it was again.